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Sounders say au-revoir to defenders Riley and Wahl

Post by Don Ruiz / The News Tribune on Nov. 23, 2011 at 12:07 pm with 11 Comments »
November 23, 2011 1:34 pm

Riley
Montreal took James Riley in the expansion draft today, then shipped him to Chivas USA for Gerson Mayen and Justin Braun. Montreal also worked a trade with Seattle, acquiring Tyson Wahl for allocation money.

Riley and Wahl are both defenders and both original Sounders coming in the 2008 expansion draft from San Jose and Kansas City respectively.

“It’s not surprising that James Riley was picked by Montreal,”

Wahl
Sounders coach Sigi Schmid said in a press release. “He’s been our starting right back for three years and a quality player. We knew it would be a risk to not protect him. He’s a veteran who can step in and help a defense right away.”

Of Wahl, Schmid said: “Tyson has been solid contributor, earning more minutes with each season. We’ll miss his value to our team, but this trade enables him to be a full-time starter and the allocation money will help us maintain the high quality in our team.”

Montreal’s first announced pick was Brian Ching from Houston. The Impact also took former Sanna Nyassi, who was taken from Seattle in last year’s expansion draft.

His is the entire Montreal expansion list.

Reaction: Two losses on the back end means the Sounders have some re-stocking to do. However, they obviously have a plan. They had little control over who they would lose in the expansion draft, but obviously moving Wahl was voluntary. And since he was traded for allocation money — in addition to the savings of two veteran salaries — you’ve got to figure the club already has a move or two in mind. … This is the third time Riley has been lost/taken in an expansion draft, moving from New England to San Jose, San Jose to Seattle, and now Seattle to Montreal and on to Chivas USA. He’s as nice a guy as they come, and I wish him all the best.

Leave a comment Comments → 11
  1. Well, I’m disappointed we lost Riley, always appreciated his ability to move up from the back and help out with crosses into the box. Losing him and Wahl makes me wonder what’s planned for the Sounders D. It’s certainly a couple of holes to fill.

  2. derekyoung says:

    I was right, and it feels awful. Boo!

  3. ciscokid says:

    Agreed Derek, I feel a special attachment to our original Sounders, and losing Le Toux and now Riley hurts the most. I would have been unhappy losing Fucito but I think this is worse. Now we’ll see what FO has up their sleeve. Trading Wahl after losing riley tells me they have plans for upgrading the flanks.

    I think it also says the FO is planning to stand pat up front and midfield, and expend their energy and $$ on GK and defense.

  4. exSlacker says:

    It opens two holes on defense, but also opens $150k in cap room PLUS how even much Allocation money we got (I HATE that they never disclose it). I’m still shocked that Montreal selected Ching. What are they going to do…hold him hostage? He said he would retire…did they think he was bluffing or that they were so golden-tongued that they could talk him into coming anyway? Who knows….maybe they know something I don’t.

  5. I hate that we lost Riley too, but we’ll see how they respond. Goalkeeper is still the biggie. Montreal may have a good trading chip in Ching (even if he won’t play for them).

  6. shanmatt72 says:

    TY for Riley for his services and glad to see him go. Wahl was depth but in return means money for a goalie and that is what’s needed. I’m stoked they didn’t take white or fucito, white was predicted to go first overall by three analysts from mls. Was never that big of a fan of Riley, lazy right back, beat alot

  7. jimkingjr says:

    If it was` up to me, any player taken in an expansion draft would have to be held by the team for six months- this “take and trade” irks me.

  8. derekyoung says:

    Was kinda impressed by the gutsy move of calling Ching’s bluff. I still think he’ll play for Houston, but Montreal will extract something for them trying to game the system. It’s one that they’ve played for a while. Onstad was another “I’ll retire first” guy.

  9. elmocatt says:

    With Wahl gone, LG needs to make LB his spot all season long. Riley, although a great guy, can be replaced (just the nature of the game). Even Roger has played there, so they can slide folks in. Would be interested to see Neagle back there – just imagine his overlapping runs with Zakuani next season. That would be some potent offense on that side. And as others have noted, the allocation money helps us in the GK department. But, do feel bad every time one of the original guys goes elsewhere.

  10. exSlacker says:

    There is a lot of talk on Sounder at Heart regarding Evans playing outside back. Apparently, he’s been capped in that position for the national team. He would certainly fit the mold of what Sigi wants – an attacking defender. However, I would seriously question his durability back there…it’s bad enough now. But, who knows. Maybe being the disher instead of the receiver results in fewer injuries? He certainly has the heart. I also see us signing a couple of backs as well as giving guys like Tetteh and King Roger a good look back there. It’s easy to forget that coming into this year, the idea of Wahl being a “loss” would have seemed absurd. A year *can* make a huge difference.

  11. exSlacker says:

    off topic…but I’m seeing reports that Arlo has accepted the job at NBC. Jeez…anyone have any good news?

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